Our law firm works with a diverse range of financial service businesses.
We have an expert team of lawyers ready to find solutions for your business.
We have extensive experience of working for a range of banks and building societies, including on:
- governance and SMCR;
- Brexit matters including international banks setting up a regulated entities in the UK or otherwise proposing to do investment business in the UK;
- Operational resilience requirements;
- advice on treasury matters; regulatory capital; and drafting capital instruments;
- advising on derivative matters; GRMAs and ISDAs; negotiating transactions;
- advise on collateral and credit support;
- advice on the settlement and close-out process and valuation, including in the context of counterparty insolvency;
- the practical implementation and impact of the Ring-fencing rules;
- advice on the structuring of new products and on the digital delivery of banking services; and
- redrafting customer terms to facilitate compliance with Smarter Consumer Communications guidance.
Digital Financial Services /
Payments / Emoney Firms
We have experience of working with a wide range of firms which deliver financial services in a variety of innovative ways digitally whether they consider themselves "fintechs" or not, including:
- payment service providers;
- e-money issuers;
- P2P lenders;
- crypto providers and exchanges; and
- other online platforms, in particular, savings platforms.
We demonstrate breadth and depth in this area of dynamic innovation advising on the full spectrum of regulatory and commercial issues affecting firms, including:
- all of the regulatory issues arising in a fintech start-up;
- Open Banking and the development of APIs;
- PSD2 (including strong customer authentication and digital security requirements);
- requirements related to the issue, redemption and safeguarding of e-money;
- the regulatory perimeter applying to ICOs and cryptocurrency, and the requirements on crypto exchanges;
- P2P lending platforms regulation including investment restrictions and wind-down plan arrangements;
- drafting consumer and business terms for various payment, e-money and other platform providers, including for e-money programme management arrangements;
- other regulation applying to payments firms (including the Payments Account Directive, the Cyber Security Directive); and
- AML / KYC requirements and the Wire Transfer Regulations.
Funds & Asset
We have extensive experience of advising on fund structuring and papering (private equity/real estate funds, limited partnerships, LLPs, companies and unit trusts); marketing; and compliance with AIF / CIS regimes, including:
- advising on the regulatory impact of proposed fund structures, in particular, whether they may constitute an AIF, CIS or give rise to a public offer requiring a prospectus;
- drafting fund documentation including LP agreements, LLP agreements, and shareholder agreements; and
- drafting all AIFM related management and delegation agreements / FCA filings.
We also act for asset managers on their own regulatory compliance, including advising on the FCA's remedies from its Asset Management Market Study.
We have experience of working with a diverse range of investment firms including equity / CFD brokers; wealth managers; IFAs; and commodity traders.
Unsurprisingly, the range of advice is wide, including:
- the application of EU law including MiFID2;
- SYSC issues: incl. Governance, SMCR, regulatory capital and Remuneration Code matters;
- COBS issues: incl. inducement rules and adviser charging;
- Financial promotions;
- CFD regulatory restrictions;
- product governance and distribution models;
- advice on the digital delivery of advice and robo-advice;
- outsourcing including Model B clearing arrangements;
- drafting terms of business and intermediary agreements; and
- advising on FOS complaints and mis-selling risk.
We have worked on many diverse crypto projects ranging from a multi-million pound NFT drop by a well-known artist; in-game distribution of crypto-assets; a DAO; and retail offerings of crypto-assets. We are able to advise on:
- determining whether an instrument / asset is a security, e-money token; exchange token; utility token; non-fungible token (NFT); and / or stablecoin;
- the regulatory treatment of the security / token and any related exemptions - as well as potential modifications to a crypto project that may take it outside of the regulatory perimeter;
- the regulatory regime applying to the marketing of crypto-assets;
- the regulation applying to Security Token Offerings and Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs);
- decentralized finance (DeFi) networks, protocols and strategies;
- smart contracts and token governance structures such as Decentralised Autonomous Organisations (DAOs);
- tokenization of physical assets;
- drafting of the terms of business for a crypto-exchange;
- whether relevant crypto-activities are being carried on in the UK;
- anti-money laundering compliance advice; and
- FCA applications for registration under the UK Money Laundering Regulations.
We have a range of experience in the insurance sector (both general and life insurance) from analysis as to whether arrangements constitute a contract of insurance (as opposed, for instance, to a contractual waiver); to product design and distribution arrangements, including:
- advising upon new product design and compliance with product governance rules;
- preparation of disclosure materials and filings with regulatory authorities;
- marketing, distribution, product development, private label/white label, joint venture and claims handling agreements;
- reviewing policy language and customer literature to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements;
- cover holder agreements, binding authorities and appointed representative agreements;
- outsourcing arrangements in the insurance sector;
- advising upon sales scripts;
- updating policy language to reflect regulatory development; and
- advising on insurance distribution networks and insurance intermediation.
Wealth Managers & Pension Providers
We provide specialist legal and regulatory services to wealth mangers and pension providers, including:
- negotiating and drafting arrangements for a leading UK wealth manager to enter into a sub-IMA with a fund manager to provide liability-driven investment management for its pension fund clients;
- drafting SIPP terms and conditions, and acting for SIPP providers on regulatory compliance matters;
- advising on outsourcing of pension trustee and administration functions;
- reviewing and advising on regulatory requirements for pension transfers and related SIPP due diligence;
- dealing with 'Berkeley Burke' related complaints; and
- reviewing and advising on FCA systems and controls, and corporate governance compliance
- Also, see our services to Investment Firms.
Working with other law firms
As a firm which specialises in financial services regulatory work, we are trusted by many law firms without that specialist capability to work with them in supporting their clients. We can play our part seamlessly in a variety of ways.